Pikri Nero

An investment project in the Pikri Nero area, to build a tourist village consisting of a five-star hotel and a large number of luxury villas, with a total capacity of 500 beds, alongside two similar projects in Koumbara and Papa-Loukas, has been designated as “strategic” by the Interministerial Committee for Strategic Investments (D.E.S.E.). 

Save Ios Association objects to this proposed investment in Pikri Nero as it fails to respect the island’s spatial and social setting, promote sustainable development nor benefit all stakeholders. It undermines rational spatial planning by creating damaging and irreversible outcomes. The studies that accompany the proposed investment project refer in negative terms to the tourism product that local enterprises in Ios currently offer.

A large-scale development as the one in Pikri Nero would put severe pressure to the island’s carrying capacity. That pressure, together with the lack of a spatial plan for the island as a whole, were the two main factors behind the Council of the State’s (Συμβούλιο της Επικρατείας) decision in May 2022 to cancel all permits for an earlier project by the same business interests in Koumbara.

As in the case of Koumbara, a tourism village in Pikri Nero would burden significantly the island’s fragile ecosystem. According to the data from Elliniki Ornithologiki Etaireia, the islands of Ios, Sikinos and Folegandros have been designated as ‘Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas’ (IBAs). They are specifically important areas for breeding seabirds and predators. There is a wildlife refuge In Ios, protected by law (Government Gazette 600 / Β / 30-4-1976), in the area of highlighted below, which covers 37,000 acres. The area has five small island wetlands, with the presence of mammals, birds, amphibians and fish. In addition, the marine ecosystem has a diversity of fauna and flora. The mega-hotel development planned for Pikri Nero, which partly overlaps with this area, would seriously endanger the wildlife in the area.

On 22 February 2022, the Ministry of Growth launched a public consultation for the proposed investment project at Pikri Nero. Our association submitted a detailed document with objections, which can be accessed here. This ”strategic” investment will now go to the Council of the State for approval in the coming months. Save Ios Association is determined to stop them. Through our legal team, we will continue our objection. To help #SavePikriNero, we have started a petition https://save-ios.gr/en/save-pikri-nero/. Such a petition should contain signatures of those who are ‘directly impacted’ by developments on the island. If you are a resident in Ios or own a property on the island and support our campaign, please sign the form (your details will be used only as part of a collective document to be presented to the Council of the State).